John Klossner

Blog archive

Public service or just a paycheck -- why do you work for the government?

My wife spent the first part of her career as a newspaper reporter, working for publications throughout New England. About 15 years ago, she was approached by a former colleague who invited her to join him in the press relations office of a federal agency. She has been working there ever since. I can safely say my wife enjoys being a government employee, although I don't think she ever felt an overwhelming desire to use her skills in government work before taking this position. The job came up, and she took it.

I share this because lately -- with all the turmoil surrounding government employees and their roles and functions -- I have been interested in what motivates people to first become government workers, and what still motivates them.

So I would like to ask any public-sector employee a few questions.

How did you get your job?

Were you specifically looking for a government job?

Does it make a difference to you whether you work in the public or private sector, or is it just a job?

Basically, why are you a government employee?

If any government employees would like to answer via the comments section, my only requests are that you a) be bluntly honest; b) keep it brief; and c) not treat it as a campaign speech.

I may compile these at some future point, but the comments section may do that for me.

John Klossner

Posted on Jun 15, 2011 at 12:19 PM


Featured

  • FCW PERSPECTIVES
    sensor network (agsandrew/Shutterstock.com)

    Are agencies really ready for EIS?

    The telecom contract has the potential to reinvent IT infrastructure, but finding the bandwidth to take full advantage could prove difficult.

  • People
    Dave Powner, GAO

    Dave Powner audits the state of federal IT

    The GAO director of information technology issues is leaving government after 16 years. On his way out the door, Dave Powner details how far govtech has come in the past two decades and flags the most critical issues he sees facing federal IT leaders.

  • FCW Illustration.  Original Images: Shutterstock, Airbnb

    Should federal contracting be more like Airbnb?

    Steve Kelman believes a lighter touch and a bit more trust could transform today's compliance culture.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.